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Viaduct technical findings near their trip to Council for final approval

October 6 2015

Vancouver’s Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts near their trip to Council for final approval

As the technical findings for Vancouver’s Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts near their trip to Council for final approval, residents are invited to participate in two public events to learn more about what stakeholders, community groups and studies found as opportunities and challenges for replacing the viaducts.

In June 2013, Council voted unanimously to move forward with the final phase of planning work for removal of the Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts. Since then, City staff conducted extensive traffic impact studies and community consultation to refine the understanding of what the viaduct removals would mean for Vancouver.

In addition to technical research, City staff conducted 13 open houses and 38 stakeholder meetings since June 2014. A two week exhibit of viaduct technical findings is currently on display at Science World. The technical findings will go to Council for approval later this fall.

Public information events

Viaducts background

The viaducts were originally designed and constructed as part of a freeway network that was never completed. It was intended to carry up to 1,800 vehicles per lane per hour; today they carry only 750 vehicles per lane per hour during rush hour. Over the last 20 years, vehicle traffic into the downtown has declined by 20%, while at the same time the city has grown with more jobs, more residents and more transportation trips overall.

Research and community consultation over the last two years revealed that an at-grade road network will be more resilient to natural disasters such as earthquakes and five-10 times less expensive for the City to maintain. Extensive modeling of the proposed new road network has shown that it will be capable of accommodating 100 per cent of the current traffic volume and will reconnect surrounding neighbourhoods to the downtown core and waterfront. Social benefits of removing the viaducts include a 13 per cent larger park space and the opportunity to build social housing on City-owned property.

Full details on the technical findings and community engagement can be found at vancouver.ca/viaducts.